Friday’s Question

What can I do to break my bad habits & heal my hurts?

Galatians 5:25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

  1. Surrender your life and your will over to the Lord.  Proverbs 3:5-6 (click here)
  2. Accept Jesus’ work on the cross for your forgiveness. 1 John 1:9 (click here)
  3. Forgive others. 1 Peter 5:10-11 (click here)
  4. Change what’s necessary Isaiah 41:10 (click here)
  5. Own your responsibility Psalms 139:23 (click here)
  6. Surround yourself with friends that build  you up Proverbs 13:20 (click here) and  Galatians 6:2 (click here)

Daily Action Plan

Daily Self Inventory, Study God’s Word, Keep in Step with the Spirit and Serve Others

Lord thank You for loving me enough to send your Son.  Help me walk more in step with You. Amen!

A Year of Forgiveness

Sometimes forgiveness is for the other person.

Sometimes forgiveness is for yourself.

All the time forgiveness is what Jesus wants us to give.

This has been quiet the year for me!  Lots to learn and lots to give!  I’ve had the opportunity to forgive in BIG WAYS!   Forgiveness is always big but sometimes it seems to have a monumental impact on you personally.

Micah 7:18    Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy.

Matthew 6:14  For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.
Luke 1:77  to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins,

2 Corinthians 2:7  Now instead, you ought to forgive and comfort him, so that he will not be overwhelmed by excessive sorrow.

2 Corinthians 2:10  Anyone you forgive, I also forgive. And what I have forgiven—if there was anything to forgive—I have forgiven in the sight of Christ for your sake,


One thing I’ve learned is that the forgiveness is usually more for me than it is for the one I’m forgiving.  There are several different types of forgiveness.   PEACE2

#1 You forgive but the forgiveness might come with Boundaries

“Forgiveness and trust are two totally different things. In fact, that’s part of your problem. Every time he’s done this, he’s come back and apologized, and you have just accepted him right back into your life, and nothing has changed. You trusted him, nothing was different, and he did it again. I don’t think that’s wise.”    (ref: “Boundaries by Townsend and Cloud”

1. Forgiveness has to do with the past. Forgiveness is not holding something someone has done against her. It is letting it go. It only takes one to offer forgiveness. And just as God has offered forgiveness to everyone, we are expected to do the same Matthew6:12 and 18:35

2. Reconciliation has to do with the present.
 It occurs when the other person apologizes and accepts forgiveness. It takes two to reconcile.

3. Trust has to do with the future.
 It deals with both what you will risk happening again and what you will open yourself up to. A person must show through his actions that he is trustworthy before you trust him again  Matthew 3:8; Proverbs 4:23

#2 You forgive but that forgiveness may be met without remorse so therefore the forgiveness only releases you to the healing power of Jesus

To forgive someone who has harmed you without them asking for that forgiveness is sometimes difficult but always necessary.  Jesus tells us individually to forgive others.  And Jesus will judge us individually for our forgiveness of others.  It is not our job to insist that they repent.  It’s a heart thing!  They may never feel the need to ask forgiveness from you for the harm done to you and they may never ask God’s forgiveness but God will deal with them alone.  But if we don’t forgive on our side then we are going to carry around hurt and anger that will only destroy our souls and eat away at our hearts.  Making us bitter!  Jesus does not want that for us.  He also doesn’t expect us to forget the harm just allow Him to remove the pain from it.  

Ephesians 4:31-32  Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

3 You forgive the other solely for their well being.  But in the end you will be blessed by the experience.

Then there may be times when someone asks for your forgiveness yet you don’t feel any anger at all against them.  You never know how a simple act of forgiveness may bring peace to a soul and allow them to also accept the forgiveness of Christ.  It may just be what they needed to find redemption.

Luke 17:3-4  Pay attention to yourselves! If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him, and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, saying, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.

Colossians 3:13   Bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.

1 Peter 3:9    Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.

As I’ve traveled through this year, I’ve grown in the understanding of the love that God has for me and the healing power of forgiving.  I’ve clung on to the truths of God’s word and the examples that he has given to me.  I have not yet perfected my every action but I have learned  how to consult Him before I react while taking time to breath and meditating on His word.  This has brought much peace to my day to day living and has settled the turmoil in my heart.  I’ve learned that His direction for me is what is perfecting me.  Until the day that I’m with Him forever. 
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Romans 12:1-21
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.  Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.  For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function,  so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others.  We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith;  if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach;  if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.
Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.  Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.  Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality.
Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.  Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.
Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. On the contrary:“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;  if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”  Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Other resources to find out more about why forgiveness is so important:

Biblegateway.org biblegateway-com-logo

“Why is forgiving so important?”  (ref: https://getupministry.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/10-reasons-why-forgiveness-is-so-important/ )

“5 Reasons you should let go” (ref:  http://www.purposefairy.com/5311/forgiveness-5-reasons-why-you-should-let-go-of-resentments/ )

And if you need a safe place to begin the forgiving healing power, find a Celebrate Recovery location near you. ( ref:  http://locator.crgroups.info/ )

Lord thank you for walking with me through my life.  I know that I can trust your strength to carry me.  Help me Lord continue to forgive when needed and asking forgiveness when I have wronged others.  Please be with the ones that I love.  I pray that everyone will turn to  you for a peace of the soul.  Amen!

My Time with Him

Haggai 2:23

Says the Lord Almighty, “And  in this place I will grant peace”

I can’t believe another Christmas has come.  This year marks “NEW”.  New traditions, new anticipations and new beginnings.  It’s been a year!   And it’s been a year of new Grace.

This is the 1st year that my whole family hasn’t been together, EVER!  My children aren’t even together this year.  Change is always hard and definitely can have an element of sadness.  Even in the joy, a hint of sorrow can seep in .

My reading this morning went straight to Haggai.  The chapter starts with the Lord telling them to “give careful thoughts to your ways”.   And then Haggai, the Lord’s messenger, gave this message, “I am with you says the Lord”. “And my spirit remains among you”.

He promises……….

Haggai 2:9

‘The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,’ says the Lord Almighty. ‘And in this place I will grant peace,’ declares the Lord Almighty.”

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So in whatever Joy and whatever Sadness we are feeling today, we are reminded that Jesus came for us.  The Lord fulfilled His promises and will continue to fulfill them as long as we continue to go to Him for our filling.

Lord I thank You.  I thank you for your ever giving Grace on me and my family.  I thank you for always covering us with a PEACE that surpasses all understanding.  I thank you for giving us your Son to live within us always.  I pray Lord for my family that is not sheltered by my roof today.  I pray that they will feel Your presence with them and they will feel my love surrounding them.  I ask you to be with those who have no one.  Wrap your loving arms around them and show them your great mercies.  Amen.

Friday’s Question

Is my life a “MISSION” OR “INTERMISSION”?

1 Timothy 1:5

The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.  BibleGateway.com-Logo

I wonder if my life is a Mission or and Intermission.  I wonder if I do enough to show my gratitude for what He has given me.   I want my life to be a Mission.  Serving in all that I do.  Doesn’t have to big, spectacular stuff!  Start with the small things, a smile, a hug and a “love you”!

I need to:

Yield myself to God – Galatians 6:1-2 (click here)

Example is what is important – 1 John 3:18 9 (click here)

Serve others as Jesus Christ did – John 13:14-15 (click here)

Lord, help me make my life a Mission! Amen!

Anticipation Waiting Hoping

Isaiah 51:3

The Lord will surely comfort Zion and will look with compassion on all her ruins;
he will make her deserts like Eden, her wastelands like the garden of the Lord.
Joy and gladness will be found in her,  thanksgiving and the sound of singing.

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We live in this world in a constant state of anticipation.  Waiting, Hoping for the the next big thing.  The lists that we have written down, the dreams we have dreamed, the pictures we have imagined and the people that we want to fulfill them.  The problem is that even in all the anticipation, waiting and hoping, if we’re placing all that on earthly things or humans then the disappointment is just around the bend.

I used to tell my kids when things wouldn’t go the way they wanted it to, “Well, welcome to life!”.  Regretfully this is a true statement.  Because as long as we are still on this earth, there will be disappointment and pain.  It’s not until I realize as CS Lewis puts it “I was made for another world.”, I will live in a constant state of disappointment and disillusionment.  Because until I fill that hole in the my heart that only can be filled with God, all the hope in the world will leave me disappointed.

St. Augustine said, “We were made for You, O Lord, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.”

And then………………

Hebrews 9:28  so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.

So now all my Anticipation, Waiting and Hoping will all be without disappointment  because God is not done yet and my dreams, hopes and lists will all be fulfilled in Heaven with Him.

But until that day comes, I will live with the Joy that comes from knowing Him and I pray that I will be able to give a “glimmer of hope” to someone on earth so they will realize that He is not done with them either.

Lord, Help me to continue to live with the Hope of Great Anticipation of your arrival! Amen!

Overcomer

Patricia Coleman:  Compassionate & Determined, these are the words that I would use for Patricia.  My journey with Patricia is just starting.  I’ve seen her from a distance, followed her on FB and known that she was a force to be reckoned with.  She is driven with great passion for the hurting and yet still searching for her own pathway.  I’m so looking forward to the years that come for our future as friends.  And for what we can teach each other and what God will teach us.  It’s going to be fantastic, for sure I know that!

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The story of my life with God….

I grew up in a family that admired God. We had the beautiful “Big Book” on the library shelf — The Holy Bible. I touched it most often when I would pull it out to have my brother lay his hand on it and solemnly swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth….so help him God.

My family attended the Presbyterian Church just a few doors down from my home and I asked Jesus into my heart when I was in the 3rd grade. I loved to pray as a child and often fell asleep talking to God. I was the youngest of five children. Although my family had some real struggles as they all do, I had great parents and a beautiful family, and I was definitely, Daddy’s Girl.

When I was in 8th grade, my precious father died of a massive heart attack, while he was taking a stress test. This forever changed the family and life I had known to that point. I can remember the shock and immediate denial and the denial that so much would change in my life and my family’s lives moving forward.

Not long after entering high school, I started making bad decisions. I was not thinking about my future, and my prayer life had died. I still believed in God, I even loved God, but I think the problem was that I did not understand His love for me and I did not have His Truth hidden in my heart.  The world had me, deception had me.

My bad decisions through my early teen years left me hurt and wounded. I felt my family was falling apart and we all seemed to be drifting away from each other. I was lost and thought I found missing love where it really did not exist.  I ended up pregnant. At that time in my life, I was devastated and felt like a failure.

I did turn back to God somewhat during that time.  I started praying again, however, I did not understand how someone like me could be a mother; for the first time in a long time, I felt like a child again myself – a very scared child. This is how I became a birth mother to my first child, Marcus, who I gave up for adoption when I was 17.

My life was completely different after that. It was colder and sadder than I care to even remember. I disconnected from my old life and friends as much as possible. My childhood home was sold during this time, and I moved to another city. I was depressed and I desperately kept praying and willing time to move forward as fast as possible so I could forget my pain.

I met my husband, Eddie, about one year later. He was different than any guy I had known, and I loved spending time with him.  Before I knew it, I was laughing again. It did not take me long to fall in love.

Eddie and I only dated a short time before we married. We were young, broke, and in love. Within one year of being married, we were pregnant with Gary. Being a mother changed me.  I was determined to be the mother I had thought I could not be and within eighteen months we had Anna, our daughter.  I loved my babies!

Eddie and I started attending a local Baptist church soon after the kids were born.  I made the decision to be baptized, and I started reading the Bible sometimes.  I was trying to make things as perfect for my little family as possible, yet I continued to struggle with past regrets and the sweet love I had for my children brought me constant pain for my missing child, Marcus. God met me where I was, He brought me comfort and peace that passed all understanding in those moments, and I had a lot of those moments. God even brought Marcus back into my life and our families’ lives for a reunion that possibly looked like a Hallmark movie from the outside.  I was still trying to grasp control of it all — fixing the past and trying to control my little family and now my Marcus, over whom I had no legal authority so that was just constant worry I struggled with.

As the years rolled by with raising kids and trying to control everyone I loved, Eddie and I had major struggles in our marriage and almost divorced.  I also lost my job I had for the last seven years and an income we relied on. It was a breaking point for me.fb_img_1475933294060

I started praying AND reading my Bible daily. I could not get enough of God’s Word.  I started in Matthew and I fell in love with Jesus somewhere in the book of John. He reminded me of who He was and what I meant to Him. He opened my eyes and I realized He brought me through times I almost destroyed myself, He gave me peace and took away my guilt and shame. He placed a passion in me to share Him and His forgiveness and love with others. He changed my marriage and restored it and He reminded me, that my children are His children and He loves them and watches over them. I also began sharing Jesus with others and our family started connecting and serving with a local Church.

One of my life verses:

John 16:33 I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace, in this world you will have trouble, but take heart, I have overcome the world.

I’ve had struggles in life again since this time, but now when I am attacked, I have His Truth hidden in my heart. We will overcome by the blood of Jesus and the words of our testimony. Patricia Coleman

Lord, thank you for putting people in my life that challenge me to think out of the box.  Patricia is one of those for sure.  Please continue to help her in her times of questioning and guide her every step.  Her desires are Your desires.  Amen!

For the Same Reason

John 16:1-7

“All this I have told you so that you will not fall away. They will put you out of the synagogue; in fact, the time is coming when anyone who kills you will think they are offering a service to God. They will do such things because they have not known the Father or me. I have told you this, so that when their time comes you will remember that I warned you about them. I did not tell you this from the beginning because I was with you, but now I am going to him who sent me. None of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ Rather, you are filled with grief because I have said these things. But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.

Jesus was born into this world for us. To save us from ourselves and our selfish desires.  He gave us examples of how to live and we still turned on Him.  But then He died for the same reason.  For us! To save  us from ourselves and our selfish desires. With His death He gave us His Spirit to live within us all of our days and guide us.  There were those that trusted and believed way back when, now it’s time to trust and turn to Him for guidance.  Listen and trust and be amazed and what we can learn. And how our lives can turn.

Lord, thank You for hanging in with me. Never leaving me when I was weak in my trust in You.  Never leaving me when I fell of the path that lead to You.  Never leaving me when I clung onto other things besides You.  Never leaving me when I rejoiced over my own knowledge instead of Yours.  Never leaving me!  Amen!

Friday’s Question

Who am I?

Sometimes we forget!  We’re so and so’s wife, parent, child or employee.  We loose who God created us to be.  We get so engulfed with the expectations of others and the guilt consumes us if we don’t fulfill their every desire or fix their every pain, that we diminish our importance.  We forget that we are God’s child, one who He placed in this particular body, particular place, particular everything so that we could fulfill His desires.  And we forget to do that freely. We have value outside of all the earthly things pulling at us, filling our spaces. No one or thing can take that away from us.  Even more personally from you, from me!

Psalm 139:13

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

Ephesians 2:10

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

1 Corinthians 6:19

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own,

Isaiah 41:10

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Romans 5:8

But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

John 3:16

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

 

For more about Who you are……….. click here BibleGateway.com-Logo

Thank you Lord!  Amen